7 05 2011


Based on the character from Marvel Comics, Thor tells the story of one superhero’s journey to Earth.

Thor comes from Asgard, a planet home to what we would call gods. While the Asgardians’ lore is deep, the movie gives enough background information to keep the audience informed. Essentially, Earth is one of nine realms in the universe, all of which fall under the protection of Thor and his people.

thor movie review

Thor is the heir to the throne of his father, Odin. Brave and foolish, he is the stereotypical young knight. When enemy frost giants attack Thor’s city, he leads a swift counter attack against their ‘realm’.

The ensuing battle is one of several visual treats of the movie. Thor’s infamous hammer smashes frost giants left and right, creating stunning visual effects. The epic action is fitting for a god, and provides a sharp contrast to Thor’s future residence on the more conventional planet Earth.

After his father banishes him from Asgard, Thor wakes up in a field, watched over by a young astrophysicist named Jane (Natalie Portman). His arrival is comical when seen from the Earthling’s point of view: a strong, Nordic man suddenly appears in a desert, rambling about gods and hammers. I would be confused too.

thor movie review

Thor’s adjustment to Earth is even more entertaining. Once he realizes that his “mortal body is weak,” he demands sustenance. When he runs out of food and drink, he smashes his mug on the floor of the restaurant and politely asks for more.

Later, he walks into a small pet store and demands a horse. When the sales clerk says they only have small dogs, Thor says that will be fine, as long as the store gives him one that is big enough to ride.

However, Thor’s intentions on Earth are good. He empathizes with his fellow humans and eventually becomes their defender. Meanwhile, Asgard is in trouble, inexorably linking the fate of his home realm and Earth.

Thor is not a deep movie. Character development is limited and obviously stated. At points, it seems like it is aimed primarily towards children. However, when the story involves a Norse god falling out of the sky and battling aliens, it’s hard to fault the movie for that.

thor movie review

Aside from Chris Hensworth (who plays a convincing Thor), the acting is mediocre. The plot is also fairly predictable. Nevertheless, the movie has charm. The dialogue and situations have enough silly humour to keep the audience entertained, and the storyline is one of the most fascinating and unique origin tales I’ve seen in a superhero movie.

Thor’s depth may be limited, but it has enough glitzy effects and incredible action to keep us entertained for the duration.  While the Nordic Thor is the god of thunder, the movie Thor is more like lightning: it suddenly entertains in a dazzling way before disappearing just as quickly.